Twitter boss hints that an edit button for tweets may finally be on its way

A quick peek into the Digital Trends’ archives reveals a 2013 article about how Twitter was considering introducing an editing tool for tweets. After that, it all went a bit quiet.

Three years later, in 2016, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey responded to increasing calls for an edit function by telling the community that the company was “thinking a lot” about introducing the feature, even going so far as to say that “a form of edit is def needed.” It went a bit quiet after that, too.

Well, here we are in 2018, and despite all the ruminating and half promises, an edit button for tweets still hasn’t landed. But Jack and company haven’t forgotten about it. On the contrary, they’re still contemplating the idea back at Twitter Towers.

We know this because Dorsey said as much during a talk at the Indian Institute of Technology in New Delhi on Monday.

Clearly the master of understatement, the Twitter boss told his audience, “We have been considering [an edit button] for a while,” adding that it needed to be done “in the right way.”

No doubt to the amusement of those who’ve been watching their children grow old as they wait patiently for an edit button to appear, Dorsey even said: “We can’t just rush it out.”

The issue seems to be the same one as five years ago — Twitter doesn’t want you to be able to change tweets posted months or even years earlier.

“We can’t make something which is distracting or takes anything away from the public record,” Dorsey said in remarks reported by TheNextWeb.

Elaborating, the CEO told his audience that attention had to be paid to “the use cases for the edit button. A lot of people want the edit button because they want to quickly fix a mistake they made, like a misspelling or tweeting the wrong URL.” This is exactly right, which makes us wonder why his team is still talking about it.

Dorsey said that a quick-edit feature like this would be “a lot more achievable than allowing people to edit any tweet all the way back in time.”

Judging by Dorsey’s comments, we can imagine the company launching an edit button that gives you a short time limit to fix typos, and that only lets you edit your last tweet.

As for when … well, let’s hope we’re not still writing about the matter in another five years.

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